Confirmation Day Overview—Holy Trinity Parish
Reception of the Sacrament of Confirmation in the Roman Catholic Church only occurs once in a person’s life. It is not just a special day for the candidate, but for all who are present. It is a precious opportunity to reflect on one’s own personal faith experience. Below is an overview of what to expect at Confirmation so that everyone can be fully present to enjoy the day.
Since Confirmation is not just another day but is a very important religious event in one’s life, Candidates and their sponsors are asked to wear proper, modest attire, as one would for any important formal event. This is also an opportunity for sponsors to be role models and examples to the Candidates of respectful dress for Mass and being in God’s presence.
The diocesan dress code specifies that blue jeans, tennis or sports shoes are not appropriate. There should be no gum or candy, and nothing should be written on the Candidates’ hands. As stated on the Diocese of Belleville website, the dress code is as follows:
● BOYS: Dress pants, dress shirt and tie. A dress coat, if possible, and polished dress shoes.
● GIRLS: Modest, conservative attire. No excessively tight or suggestive outfits. No excessive makeup or jewelry.
● SPONSORS should also be modestly and conservatively dressed.
To try to help accommodate your family and any sponsors who travel in from out of town, we try to hold the rehearsal on the day of Confirmation. Candidates and Sponsors should arrive early at the rehearsal time specified on the schedule, about one and a half hours before the Mass time.
Candidates and sponsors need to sit next to each other in the pew. The sponsors will walk with their Candidate and present him or her to the bishop using the Candidate’s patron saint name.
If the sponsor is unable to be present for rehearsal, a proxy, parent, or other guardian should attend rehearsal with the Candidate.
The rest of the family may arrive closer to the start of Mass. One pew for each family is ordinarily reserved and will be marked with the Candidate’s name. If you will need more seating than one pew, the extra family members are welcome to sit in areas behind the reserved seating. If this is your situation, you may want to inform your extended family and friends that those pews will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis and to arrive early.
Sometimes a Confirmation Sponsor cannot attend the Confirmation Mass due to a disability or living at a distance, or a scheduling conflict, or even last-minute illness or circumstance. If the Candidate’s Confirmation Sponsor is unable to attend the Confirmation Mass, a proxy should be chosen to walk with the Candidate and stand in as a witness of the Confirmation. Please notify the Director of Faith Formation as soon as possible that a proxy will be needed or was asked to stand in at the last moment. In addition to having provided the sponsor’s name on the information form, you will need to provide the name of the proxy for the church records.
Candidates Meeting with Bishop Michael McGovern
About 30 minutes before the Mass, Bishop McGovern will meet with the Candidates alone in the Parish Center. This is a great opportunity for the Candidates. Sponsors and family members are not required for this meeting and should remain inside the church during this time. Candidates will return to their pew after this meeting to join their sponsor for the start of the Mass.
A professional photographer is scheduled to take photos before, during, and after the Confirmation Mass. In order to preserve the sacredness and solemnity of the Mass, we ask that you please do not take any photos during the Mass, particularly during the time of consecration of the bread and wine into the Body and precious Blood of Jesus Christ.
Following the rehearsal, a group photo of the Candidates at the altar will be taken. As time allows, after the group photo, you may approach the photographer with requests for individual photos of your Candidate.
The photographer will take a photo of each Candidate during the Mass at the moment they are confirmed by the bishop. The photographer will also be available by request for individual and family photos after the Mass.
Photos with the bishop: Frequently, Bishop McGovern is able and willing to stand in for photos with the Candidates after Mass. We cannot guarantee this possibility each year, but we welcome you to watch for this opportunity at the doors of the church after he has processed out at the end of Mass.
Within a couple of weeks after Confirmation you will receive an email with the link to the photographer’s photo gallery website containing all of the Confirmation Day photos that were taken. You will be able to download any photos you would like to have. Those photos may be printed wherever you like to have photos made.
Questions and Needs
Please contact Jenifer Lohmann, Director of Faith Formation, with any questions or needs.
Holy Trinity Catholic Parish and School
Director of Faith Formation
Please note that the details provided here are subject to change. Be sure to watch for email updates and thoroughly read all communications regarding Confirmation. We thank you for your attentiveness.
May God bless our Confirmation Candidates!
Director of Faith Formation